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Tag: "PPm markets"

Coronavirus’ Cume Factor (Part One)

| June 24, 2020

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor
TALKERS

LOS ANGELES — When someone quotes or inquires about the ratings status of a particular format or an individual station, the almost universal response is to cite the AQH share.

While cume numbers haven’t necessarily become a complete afterthought, they undoubtedly take a backseat to share.

As the coronavirus crisis continues to grip the nation, it’s time to revisit the sometimes-forgotten element of cume and examine its performance among spoken-word stations during the pandemic.

In the first of a two-part series addressing cume, we will focus on news, and sports talk facilities; part two with deal entirely with news/talk.

A top 20 ranking (May 2020, 6+) is the inclusion threshold for the news, and sports talk breakouts that appear below.

Nielsen Audio only releases audience estimates for stations subscribing to its services. As a result, ratings stats in this analysis are limited to outlets paying that company for its information.

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COVID-19’s Effect on Spoken-Word Listening

| June 23, 2020

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor
TALKERS

LOS ANGELES — Thorough overviews have recently been posted for news stations (last Wednesday, 6/17); sports talk (last Thursday, 6/18); and commercial, English-language news/talk (this past Monday, 6/22).

Our ratings coverage is being further enhanced during the coronavirus crisis as we assess overall radio listening – and spoken-word, specifically.

Noted below are news/talk stations that appear in any PPM-market with at least a .1 (May 2020, 6+).

Meanwhile, a top 20 ranking (May 2020, 6+) is the inclusion threshold for news; sports talk; and public radio news/talk facilities.

Nielsen Audio only releases audience estimates for stations subscribing to its services. As a result, ratings stats in this analysis are limited to outlets paying that company for its information.

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May 2020 PPM Analysis: Urban AC

| June 19, 2020

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor
TALKERS

LOS ANGELES — Each month, our extensive ratings recaps focus on three spoken-word genres and one music-intensive format.

In our third installment of May 2020 ratings overviews, urban AC takes center stage representing that latter category.

This summary is comprised of PPM-market urban ACs that rank in the top 20 (6+) in the May 2020 sweep, which covered April 23 – May 20.

Nielsen Audio only releases audience estimates for facilities that subscribe to its services.

Owing to that reason, ratings stats in this exclusive analysis are limited to stations that pay Nielsen Audio for its data.

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April 2020 PPM Analysis: A Sweep Unlike Any Other

| June 3, 2020

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor
TALKERS

LOS ANGELES — Reflective of the unique nature of what has become the “new normal” owing to coronavirus’ spread, the April 2020 ratings period had more than its share of significant twists and turns.

With COVID-19 dominating all media outlets and kitchen-table conversations across the country, this very well might have been the most anticipated sweep since electronic measurement became radio ratings currency.

It differed from the highly-precarious annual “Holiday” ratings period on a number of fairly clear-cut levels, not the least of which is the divergence between pleasant family memories contrasted against newfound angst regarding a deadly virus.

Past has definitely been prologue that stations playing all-Christmas music in a “Holiday” sweep will display sizeable upticks in that period and, in virtually 100% of the time, chalk up (by far) their best stat of the ratings calendar. It’s not uncommon for all-Christmas music stations to double or triple their 6+-stats as dozens of such outlets touch double-digits (6+), and we’ve even witnessed the shattering of the 20-share level (6+).

There is a fixed time for the programming strategy – usually a week or two before Thanksgiving and running through Christmas Day. The outcome can be accurately predicted as much as nine months in advance.

Absolutely gaudy figures we are accustomed to seeing from music-intensive stations entrenched in playing holiday hits did not surface – for the most part – from spoken-word stations in April 2020.

One barometer though of a significant station shift in the electronic-measurement age is a sweep-to-sweep fluctuation in excess of one full-share.

To put things in the most vivid perspective: There were nearly four times as many of these swings (April 2020, 6+) as were registered one year ago (April 2019).

Open for debate is when the coronavirus should have been taken seriously. It’s worth remembering that the sitting POTUS was impeached by Congress in December 2019 and acquitted by the Senate on February 5, 2020. A fatality reported by Washington State officials later that month (2/29) was initially thought to be the earliest U.S. coronavirus-related death (although it’s now believed that at least two others died from the illness several weeks earlier).

Given that the final date of the April 2020 sweep was April 22, the just-concluded ratings period would mirror roughly two months of COVID-19 coverage.

There’s no contemporary history of what radio ratings look like when – in a matter of weeks – the country suffers flu-related deaths by the tens of thousands. Prognosticating ratings results was, therefore, uncharted (morbid) territory.

Playing all-Christmas music works in every market – virtually every time. It doesn’t matter if it’s a blue state or red state; a warm weather climate or a cold weather region. Appetite exists for that programming at that time of the year and it can’t be found on any broadcast or cable television network. Completely unknown was the level of desire for pandemic news on radio.

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April 2020 PPM Analysis: News/Talk

| May 26, 2020

By Mike Kinosian
Managing Editor
TALKERS

LOS ANGELES —  A wide-ranging overview of news/talk concludes our four-part series of April 2020 ratings recaps.

Included in this thorough synopsis are all commercial, English-language news/talk outlets (including online streams, if applicable) that appeared in any of Nielsen Audio’s 48 PPM-markets during what proved to be a very volatile April 2020 ratings period (March 26 – April 22).

The coronavirus impact: Nearly four of every five news/talk stations improve or hold steady March 2020 – April 2020 (78%, 6+), compared to 65% for news stations, and only 22% for sports talk.

As far as April 2019 – April 2020 stats are concerned, 82% of news outlets and 73% of news/talkers notch gains; 82% of sports talk stations, however, suffer year-to-year erosion.

Unless otherwise noted, information for each news/talk station and stream was factored into all of our highlighted charts.

Nielsen Audio only releases audience estimates for facilities that subscribe to its services. Owing to that reason, ratings stats in this exclusive analysis are limited to stations that pay Nielsen Audio for its data.

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